State rankings are inherently biased, as a Floridian is likelier to think highly of Florida than a New Yorker would be (though, really, a New Yorker is just a future Floridian). Yet, even natives of these 12 states might acknowledge that, for the most part, their home state lacks much to write home about.
Nebraska's identity is so closely tied to agriculture that the mascot of the state's flagship university is a Cornhusker. Though we are grateful to have the state's billions of bushels of corn feeding the nation, “corn” and “memorable” don't belong in the same sentence. One of the only times we think about Omaha is if we want to mail someone a steak for Christmas.
It's ironic that Delaware has the word “aware” in its name because most Americans couldn't find it on a map. In fact, most of us aren't aware of a single city in this tiny Mid-Atlantic state, which is renowned for its business-friendly taxation landscape. When your claim to fame is tax policy, you know your state is a snoozer.
3. Rhode Island
People from Rhode Island praise its ample waterfront acreage. Jamestown, Newport, and other luxurious communities are Bucket List destinations for those who get their kicks mansion-gazing. For the most part, though, America's smallest state is one of America's most anonymous states—and that's just how its silver spoon-wielding residents prefer it.
Even Dorothy, born and raised in Kansas, could not find her way back. The Great Plains, a vast expanse of relatively flat land with few discernible features, encompasses most of Kansas. Few regions in the United States are as forgettable as the Great Plains. They should really be called the Mediocre Plains.
5. North Dakota
North Dakota is Canada. Its bitter winters and distinction as the second-most famous Dakota mean that North Dakota rarely comes up in geographical conversation. Mount Rushmore, Badlands National Park, and the Crazy Horse Memorial are all in South Dakota, leaving few reasons for tourists to travel north.
Iowa is another state whose identity largely revolves around a vegetable—at least, that's how many outsiders see it. An elephant could walk through Iowa and not remember it. There are more hogs and pigs in the state than there are people.
If it weren't for Gene Hackman and the Hoosiers, Indiana would be one of the most identity-needy states. A NASCAR race is one of the most memorable aspects of Indiana. No offense to NASCAR or its fans, but it's not a good sign when one of your state's hallmarks is cars driving in circles for several hours.
Calling Ohio forgettable is like calling The Elephant Man “homely.” The vast majority of Americans have already forgotten that East Palestine, Ohio, was the site of one of the nation's most devastating environmental disasters in February 2023. We shouldn't forget this (seriously), but Ohio is just not top-of-mind for the average American.
States like Idaho, Wyoming, and Utah are often forgotten, as they are some of the least populated and most remote states in the Union. Wyoming has Yellowstone National Park, which seems more significant than Idaho's claim to fame—the potato.
10. New Hampshire
A wild, stunning landscape has not stopped New Hampshire from hiding out in relative obscurity. The state motto is Live Free or Die, which makes sense—most of our brains are completely free of thoughts about New Hampshire and will remain that way until we die.
While the show Ozark has brought some (perhaps unwanted) attention to Missouri, it's a state that few people outside of Missouri ever think about. Even St. Louis' Gateway Arch is one of the more forgettable American “landmarks.” Take away the Ozarks' natural beauty, and you might struggle for reasons to visit Missouri.
Overshadowed by regional neighbors like New York and Massachusetts, Connecticut makes the list of states you're most likely to forget on trivia night. As one traveler puts it, the state is “Bland, white bread, and oh so forgettable.”
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